Eighteen months into this pandemic, we have seen the loss of over 13,000 Louisianians to the virus, with 4.5 million deaths around the globe.
Such devastating sickness and death take a toll on the soul of a community. It is unimaginable and incalculable to know the impact of this pandemic on those who have contracted, died from, lost a job, or experienced isolation from this virus.
The reality of life is already so challenging when you face sickness, setbacks, and the unexpected death of those you value. To be in a relationship with others opens our hearts and soul to unimaginable grief when we lose those we love.
It is no wonder that our faith fore-bearers created an annual day for us to remember those who have gone before us. Whether it be All Saints Day, November 1, or All Souls Day, November 2, the church has set a day apart from all others to memorialize those who brought formation to our lives.
I invite you to reflect on the people of faith that inspired your journey. Consider those that took the time to teach you about the way of Jesus, who showed you what it looks like to serve others and those that gave the best of themselves for the work of God through the church.
As you think about such extraordinary people, consider how you are the living legacy of their story. How might their lives continue to inspire and empower you to become more like Jesus, in word and deed?
I love how the writer of Hebrews so beautifully put it, “Therefore, since such a great cloud of witnesses surrounds us, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith” (12:1-2).
We will celebrate All Souls Sunday on November 7. As you are given space to reflect on those that have enlightened your faith, we will provide you with a chance to honor them by lighting a candle in their memory. For those joining worship from home, we invite you to set a candle out for the worship experience.